Dec 28

Suicide is always an option

I will let the title act as a trigger warning. Today’s post will be frank and a bit heavy. Proceed with caution.

I am not sure the age I was when suicide first entered my brain. At least before I was raped by my stepfather, I had no concept of it. I distinctly remember thinking the lyrics of “Seven Spanish Angels” were such that “the rifles fired again” was her own rifle, not suicide by enemy. That was pre rape. I also remember my most major attempt at suicide. I was fifteen. The day after my first PIV sex. It was consensual. I met him that night. We fucked in the van for troubled teens who live at a ranch to modify their behavior. He was a “troubled teen.” I swallowed two bottles of pills the next day.

It was in front of my friends which is essentially the same as calling my parents myself. Never mind if I really wanted to die, or if I just wanted the attention. I literally took two bottles of pills having no idea what they are, hoping they would somehow break me.

But that wasn’t the first time I thought about it. I know I started cutting at least a year or so before. I remember a few times holding the knife precariously at my wrist vein. I remember dragging a sharp rock across making tiny cuts into bigger cuts until I was too scared to continue. I remember lying to my parents that I fell on some rocks that caused the scratches. So it wasn’t the first time.

Nor the last. Jarreg could tell you better about the time on the bridge. He held me back. Who knows if I would have jumped if he wasn’t there. Something always seemed to hold me back. Fear. Friends. Something.

But that’s not what I want to talk about.

“I think many people kill themselves simply to stop the debate about whether they will or they won’t ”

Susanna Kaysen in Girl Interrupted

I was college age when I read the above quote and book. Fuck, did it hit home. I knew this debate well. I played the cat and mouse game practically my whole life. With out knowing the words every action seemed to be centered around a crucial question: Will I manage it this time? Will I fall, jump, shoot, swallow, cut? Will I die?

I call it a game. The sides of me competing make it seem like a game at times. Especially when the sides stand so much to lose. Every telephone pole on every road becomes a question, an option. “If I could just turn this wheel.” And the images start. Crumpled metal. Sounds. Tears. Phone calls. Gurneys. Death.

Then my husband. My kids. Who will pick them up from school today? Will they have to wait. They never have to wait. They won’t understand why I am not there. Will someone call Jarreg to get them? Will he have to leave work? How will bills get paid then?  Silly thing. Worrying about who will pick the kids up and how bills will get paid if I drive into a pole. Silly, tiny piece of doubt that keeps my wheel straight and me alive.

Obviously, I haven’t killed myself yet but sometimes the “yet” is what breaks me. Knowing suicide is always there, an option, a crutch, a perpetual dare makes me want it over. Makes me want to die just to end the part of myself that wants to die.
Is that meta?

Sometimes suicide is my friend. Kind of ashamed to admit that knowing suicide is always an option, keeps me in control of my destiny. I know how petty and selfish it is. You don’t have to tell me that sitting in the bathroom with a knife while kids laugh and play isn’t selfish. I know.

I have never been able to imagine properly people who don’t share this dance with me. I know they exist. I just don’t know how. How is it not a question for them as well? Do they just not know that suicide is always an option for them too? How can I forget it is an option for me? Something I am still trying to figure out. I guess, when I do, the debate will finally be over.


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  1. 1

    I totally understand this feeling myself. I was about 7 when I first considered suicide. I think when you start to think that way it just adds suicide to your possible options for problem solving and its always there. The person who hasnt seriously contemplated it is unlikely to go there but once you do you can’t help it. I am not sure how I fought it off either but I did. I am currently in the longest stretch without it being a maor possibility in my life(a few months) but I worry about when it will happen again because I know that it will.

    If anyone can tell me an off switch to that thinking I would love to find it. I have people who need me now and I can’t go there but its hard.

    1. 1.1

      Anna, I have been searching for the off switch for half my life. No amount of contentment or happiness with my life completely shuts it off. Only mutes the conversation. It ALWAYS goes on. I have found though that talking about the conversation when it is loud enough to bother me is my own sense of control over it. It is hard. I don’t want everyone to think I just want attention. I don’t want everyone to think I am totally at the edge. I just want to stop the battle going on inside my head.

  2. 2

    Probably shouldn’t have read this before going to see a movie with my g/f.
    I may have more to say later, but suffice it to say that I have had this debate many, many times myself. The most recent one was whether or not to cross a busy intersection against the light at 2am.

    It landed me in the hospital for a week, and made me move across the country again.

    1. 2.1

      I am sorry about the timing. I hope that you still managed a good time. I am finding more and more people who have this debate raging inside them which probably shouldn’t surprise me but somehow still does. As I mentioned to Anna, about the only way I found to control this part of me is talking about it. I can’t guarantee it will work for you but might be worth a try to first let someone know how the debate happens and that talking about it is you trying to exercise control. Then when it happens call that person and say for some strange reason, I have the urge to drive straight into traffic. If you can’t I understand. Not everyone is me and has my same needs.

  3. 3

    I have never been able to imagine properly people who don’t share this dance with me. I know they exist. I just don’t know how. How is it not a question for them as well? Do they just not know that suicide is always an option for them too?

    I’ve thought about suicide in the abstract over the years. I once laid I steak knife against my wrist then chickened out and put it back. After having my lovely child I was severely depressed and thought a few times she might be better off having no mother than one that could do nothing right. (In hindsight I was a good mother and did my best to care for her. No mother is perfect every second.)

    Each time I have come to that question, thinking of it as an option, I reject it because I am scared of what comes after I die. The bottom less pit of depression swallows me up often, but I crawl my way out because my fear of there being nothing when I die makes me want to try again.

    Thank you for sharing this, Willo. It can’t be easy. And you sound like a wonderful mother, so I don’t blame you for having moments where you aren’t 100% perfect. I’m not and I beat myself up for every single one of them. So I do my best to show love and support to the other mothers out there who could use encouragement just like me.

    While the choice is yours, the options is yours, I’m so very glad you’ve never chosen that path. The world, the people you love and the people you touch (me included) would be poorer without your presence.

    Take care of yourself.

  4. 4

    You are not alone, I completely understand you.

    There is not a single day i dont think about my own death, I don’t have huge problems, I have economic problems like everyone does, had to pass thought shitty jobs like a lot of people do.

    When I was like 7 years old, some wanker took me to church for the first time, all that kind of stuff I never heard of was shocking to me, seeing that there is a God so fucked up to bring all the shit on the world.

    All my Life i have been an agnostic, never truly believed in any god or truly denied his existence, we will never know.

    Though my Higschool years i read a lot about Philosophy: speacilly stuff like Nihilism, Existencialism, Tibetan Buddism, Liberalism and so on.

    Then I had one of the biggest falls, my mother and I got kicked out of our house (rent – money problem) we were homeless almost a month, staying on other people couches and camping.

    At this time i had a pro-suicide stand, but never actually tried. Anarco punk music and getting into economics, things like the Venus Project, the Federal Reserve, Global Banking, the Zeitgeist Movement and Occupy Wall Street just show me that life sucks. Everything is pointless we are slaves of a economy.

    Suicide is the biggest form of rebellion in my opinion. Thomas Szasz said that suicide is the most basic right of all. If freedom is self-ownership—ownership over one’s own life and body—then the right to end that life is the most basic of all. If others can force you to live, you do not own yourself and belong to them.

    Many forms of existentialist thinking essentially begin with the premise that life is objectively meaningless, and proceed to the question of why one should not just kill oneself; they then answer this question by suggesting that the individual has the power to give personal meaning to life.

    I Have dreams of course, Im willing to finish my College studies and I am a musician: that is the only thing that kept me alive all this time, musical instruments calm me, calm my soul.

    Im 100% pro-choice, the freedom to choose when to end it all is precious, but you can’t just waste it, you have to leave a big track of your life, otherwise all these years mean nothing, and it would be just a wasted life, a number, and stadistic.

  5. 5

    Hello fellow suicide thinker. I assume everyone got to this blog the same way i did, searching things about suicide. If ‘big, tough’ people knew how much i thought about suicide, they would most likely say it is an easy way out. And even when people like us do not want to admit it, this is a true statement. Unfortunately. It definitely would not be fair to your children or husband. They NEED you. and i mean it when i say this. Think about if your mother killed herself.. how would you get on with life. I know that if my mother were to die from killing herself leaving me and the rest of the family alone, it would only make suicide a larger window for me. Now, i know you don’t want that for your children. Please remain strong the world must have you alive. To get rid of the window why don’t you begin by working on becoming a very self-less person. whenever you can, be super good to someone or go out of your way to be as kind as possible, especially if it doesn’t fit your time at the moment. Not only will you be doing other people favors, but yourself. Removing the selfishness in your life in anyway you can could stop you from suicide, the ‘selfish thing’ to do. You can do this, i have confidence in you my friend.

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